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Connecticut Chemical Company Faces Fine for Clean Air Violations

Release Date: 02/18/2009
Contact Information: Paula Ballentine, (617) 918-1027

(Boston, Mass. – Feb. 18, 2009) - Cytec Industries faces a fine for alleged violations of the federal Clean Air Act at its plant in Wallingford, Conn., under an Administrative Civil Complaint issued by EPA. The chemical company may be subject to penalties totaling $437,204 for the violations.

Cytec, a global chemical company, maintains a plant in Wallingford. Among other things, the plant contained a production line where they manufactured resins used for the coating of furniture. The manufacture of these resins is regulated as “Hazardous Air Pollutants” under the Clean Air Act.

EPA performed both a facility inspection and an audit of Cytec’s practices regarding their compliance with clean air standards. Among other violations, the EPA complaint alleges that Cytec emitted excess Hazardous Air Pollutants, including formaldehyde and methanol, in violation of the National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) for Amino/Phenolic Resins.

Exposure to formaldehyde can result in respiratory symptoms, and eye, nose, and throat irritation. Exposure to methanol can result in blurred vision, headache, dizziness, and nausea. Formaldehyde and methanol are also volatile organic compounds, which contribute to the formation of ground-level ozone (smog). Exposure to ground level ozone can trigger a variety of health problems including chest pain, coughing, throat irritation and congestion. Exposure to ground level ozone can also exacerbate conditions associated with bronchitis, emphysema and asthma.

Cytec has informed EPA that it has stopped the production of spray dried resins and will dismantle the resin production line.

More information:

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EPA clean air enforcement in New England (http://epa.gov/ne/enforcement/air/index.html)